artefact cards - instruction booklet


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Page 1: Artefact Cards - Instruction Booklet
Page 2: Artefact Cards - Instruction Booklet
Page 3: Artefact Cards - Instruction Booklet

ideas are valuable. they deserve a better home than a post-it note.

Artefact cards have been designed to offer a better way to craft, refine and reorder ideas.

sometimes the cards pull the ideas from your head into the real world.

sometimes they encourage your hand to do the thinking for you.

you could use the cards to:

• order your own thinking• work productively with others• tell stories in a tactile way

this is a rough guide to using them. the best way is the one you make up.

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“Artefact works because it is less about ‘thinking’ something through, and more about ‘making’ something through” - Mark Earls

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There’s a knack to building a dry stone wall.

it starts with laying out all the materials around you, so you can start to see which stones fit together, and which don’t fit at all.

Try using the artefact cards to draw out ideas that live in your head, or are lost in your devices.

craft them, shape them. wield that pen like you mean it. Invest effort in your ideas, and they’ll reward you.

lay your thoughts out around you. shuffle them, reorder them. create new connections, forge new ideas.

See how your ideas fit together.

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make something precious...

the cards give back what you put in; slapdash scribbles make poor ideas.

Think about what you will write or draw. Imagine what it looks like.

carefully draw it, double back over your writing. Make it worth keeping.

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explore the shape of ideas...

straight line thinking always takes you exactly where you’re heading.

make shapes of your ideas, or maps, or Star charts, or scaffolding...

Then explore them. Push and pull them. remake, revise, reorder.

draw like you used to...

when people say ‘I can’t draw’, They mean ‘I don’t draw much anymore’.

you no doubt drew loads as a kid. use the cards to remember how.

Drawing like a child is great, because children think anything is possible.

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“Nobody felt bad about drawing on them or moving them around. it’s not just your stuff on the table, it’s our stuff...” - Toby Barnes

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workshops are too predictable, which defeats the point.

The cult of the sticky note prevails. everyone scrawls on lots of them, as they’ve been taught to do for years.

They’re stuck to a wall, there’s a debate, and The loudest voice wins.

artefact cards demand fewer, better ideas from a group.

ideas that are thought through properly, crafted carefully, and handled with care.

ideas people care about long after they’ve left the room.

ideas good enough to work.

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a simple start...

it helps to get everyone used to the cards. all start by drawing a dot.

Then hold the pen on the dot, count to three, and just ‘draw’...

Talk about the cards you drew, and why; was it ‘thinking’, or ‘drawing’?

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fewer, better ideas...

you’re looking for more precise, crafted ideas. it’s not a factory.

Tell people this. They’ll be used to writing down any old thought.

Try limiting the cards, or the number of ideas they can share at the end.

play some games...

When you have a table of cards in front of you all, play with them.

Match them up, hide some of them, swap and trade them, and so on.

Understand through the games which cards are most valuable.

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“It’s a great way to share ideas; It makes people feel that this is a work in progress, that there’s something tangible and toy-like to play with” - Gareth Kay

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A beautifully crafted presentation is a joy to behold.

yet it is a very finished thing; the ideas are in stasis, encased in technological amber, trapped in your computer.

telling a story with the artefact cards is different.

the ideas and arguments are all there, but they are Fluid.

people can reach in and begin to remix and reshape the story.

It’s more involving for everyone.

A little less conversation, a little more action, As Elvis said.

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deal the perfect story...

as you go through the pack, you can react more quickly to respond.

You can instantly go to the part of the story that feels important.

If you cut straight to the cards that matter, you’ll keep dealing aces.

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A story you shape together...

At first, you hold all the cards. yet as soon as they’re down...’s open season. People will want to reach out, feel them, move them.

Which is great. Encourage them to join in. they’re playing and learning.

let hands do the talking...

Watch which ideas people play with. the patterns and shapes they make.

follow their hands or eyes if they start going back to older cards.

spot which parts of the story they want to play, and focus there.

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